Find It Fast Panel

Upcoming Events

Admissions FAQ's

Misericordia University Partners with the City of Wilke-Barre for a Health and Wellness Program

Misericordia University Partners with the City of Wilke-Barre for a Health and Wellness Program

Misericordia University Partners with the City of Wilke-Barre for a Health and Wellness Program

Misericordia University’s Physical Therapy program partnered with the Wilkes-Barre Housing Authority and the Wilkes-Barre Health Department to develop a program that promotes health and wellness in a 6-week program that included exercise and education on health and safety.

Residents of the East End Towers, a subsidized housing community, participated in the Health and Wellness program. The 2nd and 3rd-year graduate level Physical Therapy students who participated were enrolled in the healthcare elective class, “Leadership in Public Health.”

Over the six weeks, the Misericordia students designed, implemented and reviewed the program’s outcomes under the direction of the Physical Therapy faculty. Residents were assessed individually during the first session to determine their fitness level, guide their needs, and make them feel comfortable with the students. The sessions included an exercise class focusing on strength, balance, and endurance after a student-led discussion with topics on proper nutrition, physical activity, home, and community safety, and the benefits of sleep.

Alexa Wagner, a 2nd-year Physical Therapy student, felt that the entire experience was enriching because they could work with patients outside of physical therapy and have honest conversations regarding their health and wellness. “It was important to provide those resources, get a better understanding of the community that's around us. Overall, it is a well-rounded program that allowed us to use many skills we do not always get to practice,” says Wagner.

She explains that physical therapy students typically only have this type of engagement with patients once they are in the clinical setting. However, with this program, students could ask professors for help in discussing health and wellness with patients before clinical work. “It allowed us to have this growing period as a class with our faculty involved. It was not the structure of the typical professor-and-student relationship. It was a collaboration,” stated Wagner.

The residents and students have benefited from the activity and socialization that the program also offers. The partnership with the Wilkes-Barre Health Department started with an internship opportunity through the Medical Health and Humanities program in 2021. It has since become a relationship that has expanded to better serve the community by meeting the residents within their living community.

Misericordia University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree program provides an education that produces physical therapy practitioners who are critical thinkers, educated consumers of research, and advocates for lifelong learning. As an entry-level professional post-baccalaureate program, the physical therapy curriculum reflects a commitment to the complementary relationship between liberal arts and professional studies that enables graduates to adapt and deal with constantly evolving societal and professional needs.

For more information about the Misericordia Physical Therapy program, click here. For more information about the City of Wilkes-Barre, please click here.